Starting a new business? Don’t go it alone.
I always recommend to my clients who are starting a new business to speak with anyone he/she knows who may have good experience and advice to give you before you open your new business.
Speak to people who are in the same business. They may be friends of the family or even future competitors. You would be surprised at how helpful small business owners are when discussing the ups and downs of owning your own business.
Spend a day or two with the business owner. See what it is like to actually conduct the business. Ask as many questions as you can. How much income can a business such as this make? What is it like dealing with clients, customers, suppliers, landlords, utilities?
Speak with the following professionals:
- Your accountant. She will tell you what business entity you need: a sole proprietorship, a partnership, LLC, or corporation. Your accountant will also advise you regarding payroll tax, unemployment tax and withholding taxes.
- Insurance broker. Every business needs insurance. Will you need fire insurance, liability insurance, contents insurance, Worker’s Compensation insurance, employment insurance, event insurance, malpractice insurance?
- Your lawyer. A good lawyer will protect you from yourself. Do you need a partnership agreement that sets out the division of labor and capital between you and your partners? Do you need employment contracts, a commercial lease with your landlord? Are you purchasing a corporation or only its assets? What if you have a dispute with one of your vendors, employees, your landlord or your partner?
Simple advice for the new business owner….. Don’t go it alone.